Antonio, tell us about yourself and your family!
First of all, thank you very much for the interview. Well I’m Antonio Delgado Rodríguez, and I’m 26 years old. I was born and raised in Chihuahua, Chihuahua, México. I’m an Industrial and Systems Engineer currently working in the aerospace sector. I live with my parents. I have one younger sister, a niece called Julia, and a girlfriend called Ana Ortiz Fierro. We all are very close!
How long have you been a musician?
Since I was very little I was interested in music. I got an acoustic guitar back in 2004 as a Christmas present and since then I’ve been playing it. I don’t only play guitar. I also play mandolin, ukulele, a little bit of piano, some percussions, and now banjo!
What do you like most about bluegrass music?
I think it’s an awesome style! I like the fact that you can actually play the instruments and it’s not like a computer does all the job. Nowadays the most popular music only talks about parties, drugs, etc., and I think that is harming our society. But that’s not the case with bluegrass music. Everybody should listen to bluegrass music!!
Tell us about your music goals.
My closest musical goal is to learn how to play banjo. I’m reaching that goal watching Banjo Ben’s lessons! Also I’m learning about music production. I like everything related to music productions, recording the instruments, the vocals, mixing and mastering and all of that. Last Christmas, Ana and I recorded a Christmas song and a very close friend of ours helped us with the video. If you want you can watch it in here. Now that I have a banjo, I want to mix both goals, I’ll start recording bluegrass and folk covers with my new RK-R35.
How are you enjoying the RK-R35?
It is awesome!!! I play it a lot everyday! Everyday I take a look at some of Banjo Ben’s lessons and also I try to play some of my favorite songs from artists like Mumford & Sons, John Denver, the Punch Brothers, and so on. The RK-R35 looks and sounds amazing!
Do you have a favorite song you like to play on the RK-R35?
Since I was very little my father showed me the live concert of Tubular Bells II from Mike Oldfield. The main instrument of the last track, Moonshine, is the banjo so I’m trying to learn it, but that requires a lot of practice. I also like to play “Hopeless Wanderer” from Mumford & Sons. That song is really fast so every day I practice with a metronome until I can play it right.
Do you know any other Mexican banjo players?
Actually I don’t. My favorite band, Pxndx (Panda), in 2010 recorded a MTV Unplugged and they wrote a song called “Sistema Sanguíneo Fallido” and they play banjo in that one but that’s it. There is a Colombian band called Morat and they use the banjo in most of their songs.
How do you think banjo would fit in with traditional Mexican music genres?
I’ve never thought about it, but now that you mention it, it would be very interesting to listen to Mariachi music with some banjo in it! I’ll adapt a song and I’ll record it so we can see how it would sound. It must be very cool!
What similarities are there between bluegrass and Mexican music genres?
When I think about bluegrass and Mariachi music, for example, I imagine myself with my girlfriend and some friends in the woods doing some “carne asada” (similar to American barbecues), enjoying the country and having a really good time. I think that’s one of the most notorious similarities. You can play them at a reunion and everyone will enjoy it.